REED—ON THE EDGE. Fifth book in the River Friend Series out 21st October 2020

The fifth little book all about the Reed water plant (Phragmites australis), to be published by River Friend, is due out soon. Here is a taster, and please watch out for it on Amazon and other famous bookshops.

RIVER FRIEND: A series of Riverine Small Books by Tina Bone and Sylvia M. Haslam. Book 5. REED—On The Edge

What are reeds (Phragmites) like? To begin with, it is one of the very few plants to be native (not introduced) in all five continents of the world.
Imagine working all day with a marvellous sky above and below surrounded by reeds, just a wind-blown rustle and calling birds—an experience not to be forgotten.
What are the uses of reeds and reedbeds? Whole human populations can live in and, in extreme cases, nearly entirely upon the reedbed. Hermits, and to some extent monks and nuns, ventured into reed wetlands so that their prayers would purify and sanctify the haunt of demons (St Guthlac, Beowulf).
In Europe, the struggle for community existence in the hazy band “twixt land and water”, is usually won by Phragmites. In the Americas, Australasia, Africa and much of Asia, it is usually won by other reedswamp species.
Is it just a grass; is it war-like? Yes. A silent battlefield where a plant is NOT “nice” to its neighbour in seeing that “next door” has space to grow, enough light to grow well, enough nutrients and, of course, enough water, just doesn’t happen. For the reed it is an intense and continuing, but silent, battle for survival. There is no peace in the reedbed for Phragmites—just the giant struggle for existence….

Fig. 1. Apart from its invaluable resource for humans, many animals and birds live and breed in the reedbed. For example, Reed Warblers and Bearded Tits (or Bearded Reedlings). Bearded Reedlings eat mainly reed seeds in winter and soft-bodied insects which gather poolside during the summer. Their nests are built with reed leaves and old fluffy seed heads. The figure shows a male bird with black moustache, and a more plain female, and eggs in a nest in the swaying reed stems.

Different wetland species and how they interact
Reedswamp into open water (historically common)
Seasonal patterns
Root toxins and short grass
The Scramblers
Management of reedbeds for some (human) use
Ways to Dominate
Plant factors
Outside factors acting in mixed stands
Reedswamp to Trees
List of Stand-alone Titles in the River Friend Series
About the Authors

River Friend Book 5 coming soon, and Nettie’s Nature Puzzles

Book 5 in the River Friend Series: REED—”ON THE EDGE” should be out in the next two weeks. The front cover picture (“Regeneration—The Mighty Reed”) is included in my new series of fabulous jigsaws (NETTIE’S NATURE PUZZLES) which will also be available soon. View more here:

A5 Limited Edition Handcrafted Desk Diary for 2021 by Tina Bone

A5 Limited Edition Handcrafted Desk Diary for 2021:

ONLY £10.00 EACH
A5 size (148mm wide x 210mm tall), 114 pages. Wire bound. Front and back covers are 260gsm gloss card, laminated, and internal pages are 160gsm bright white matt paper. This diary design has lots of space for writing your important dates and events on: one week per page (Monday to Sunday) with a couple of pictures with prose and poems interleaved between each week.
This is a limited edition of just 25 handcrafted copies. CLICK HERE FOR FURTHER DETAILS AND TO PURCHASE.

2012 The Mighty Reed and Reedlings completed

I have just completed this little water colour painting (on Aquarelle Arches 140lbs 100% cotton rag paper, size 14″ x 10″). It is Figure 1 in the next River Friend Book: “REED: ON THE EDGE”. This is only a snippet as the full picture will be published in the book in due course. Only another 33 figures to do! I do hope you like this little creature, commonly called bearded tit, but proper name is Reedling.

Male Reedling

New 2021 Handcrafted Hanging Calendars for sale

If you are one of those lovely people who still likes to write important dates and events down in a printed calendar, please follow this link to my Shop at Tina’s Fine Art to view and purchase. Only £7.50 each plus £3 postage and packing. (Two designs, same pictures and poems.)

Book 5 Started: Figure 1 The Almighty Reed and Reedlings

Lovely to start on book 5 in the River Friend series: REED: ON THE EDGE. Here is a blog post about beginning the first figure in the book… VIEW BLOG POST

PRELIMINARY SKETCH. Follow the link to see more progress pictures and information.

1604: Tea & Cake & off to a new home

This little painting, which received a Highly Commended award in the latest Patchings Festival (online) exhibition (The Artist, and Leisure Painter) has now gone to its new home. The buyers visited the studio and we had tea and cakes on the patio (all socially distanced of course!). A lovely farewell to a little water colour painting which, on and off, took four years to complete. PICTURE PROFILE

And a little blog of history about the painting.

Artist Code: 1604. Completed 9th March 2020. “Three New Blades” of grass (Fieldfares and Redwing) SOLD April 2020 to private buyer. Water colour on Aquarelle Arches 100% hot pressed cotton rag. Unframed size 12″ x 9″.

Barn Owls Blunder

I have just left off painting because I was not happy with progress. I do hope I have not mucked it up (have not done that for a while). But after all the hard work and effort, it is so annoying when it starts to go wrong. My heart is on my sleeve, so I need a bit of time to reflect on the progress and whether I should tear it up or put it away for a few days and go back to it with a fresh eye. Not sure!

This has probably happened because I should now really be doing the illustrations for the next book in the River Friend Series, Book 5: “REED—ON THE EDGE”, and is obviously at the back of my unconscious mind and affecting my painting hand!!!

Should I tear it up, tidy it up, or wait for another day for a fresh look?